Spring tends to have an invigorating effect – the long days of dark and cold winter are beginning to fade, much missed and necessary Vitamin D is absorbed as we expose our pale skin, birds return in mass, demanding an inordinate amount of seed, spring blooms are popping up. Whatever the cause, the promise of bountiful sunshine and the return of warmer weather, spring cleaning is a tradition that allows us to harness our renewed energy to declutter and clean our surroundings.
Removing unused items from our homes and tidying up is also a cathartic experience for many, decluttering our minds as an added bonus. Open the windows, turn on your favorite happy music (“Cheeseburger in Paradise,” anyone?), and get moving.
The mere decision of where to begin can be overwhelming. Don’t let it stop you! Whether the entire home needs a swipe or you have a room or two (or three) that are closed off simply to hide the unsightly clutter, you can absolutely make a clean/spring start, just start with a plan.
Most of us are trained to multi-task. More and more evidence is proving this to be less than effective at best. My suggestion? Break down your spring cleaning into manageable chunks. Allocate a set amount of time to devote to each room. Sarah Aguirre, a housecleaning expert, provides a great tutorial on 15-minute room clean, as well as a thorough room by room clean. One absolute gem she shares:
Classify every item of clutter in a room in to three simple categories:
- Things that belong in a different room
- Things that belong in the room, but in a different place
While you are cleaning, you have the opportunity to help others – win-win! Donate your unused items to your favorite local charities or sell them and use the profits to help others. The Guerrant Foundation, through ‘Spring Cleaning for a Cause’ will match your donations from sales of unneeded items to provide small loans to help some of the world’s poorest citizens, mostly women, rise from poverty.
Get busy – next week we will move on to the outside of your home and discuss projects that will give you the greatest ROI (Return on Investment), both personally and financially.
As always, your comments, thoughts, and suggestions are welcome.